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Samuel O'Reilly invented the electric tattooing machine in 1891. O'Reilly improved upon an earlier tattoo machine invented by Thomas Edison that did not succeed commercially.
April 17, 2007 at 4:43 pm
(1) Danielle says:

Was there ever any changes into the tattoo machine?

August 11, 2007 at 5:52 pm
(2) Pete Sinclair says:

Considering I am probably the only Tattoo Artist in The World related to Edison (his son, Dash, married a cousin, Marie Toohey) it really hacks me off every time I see O’Reilly’s name attributed to inventing the first Tattoo Machine. He didn’t. He took Edisons work, made a few minor changes and claimed it as his own. It doesn’t matter that Edison’s machine was not a commercial success. What matters is that there was a machine there in the first place for O’Reilly to rip off.

August 11, 2007 at 5:54 pm
(3) Pete Sinclair says:

And it was 1873 that Edison invented it and 1875 that O’Reilly plagiarised it. Ooooh that makes me mad!

September 18, 2009 at 5:11 pm
(4) Darwin says:

Hi there I`m a tattooist as well and As far as my investigations have brought me…I`ve learned that Edison`s machine was an ‘engraveing machine’.

O`Reilly just turned it into a tattoo machine.
In fact if you look up the motor structures for a doorbell from back then, you`ll notice the exact same machines we use today for tattooing…Would you then argue that as tattooists we have ‘stolen’ the doorbell mechanism of the 30`s as well?…lol

October 26, 2009 at 1:35 pm
(5) Marionette says:

I’m just an aspiring tattoo artists, and am looking up stuff for a report, but I think I should say this. Pete, Darwin just totally owned your ass on that. xD

March 14, 2010 at 7:06 pm
(6) ray says:

hey pete if you know how to read you would of read that o’reily invented the 1st electric machine so dont say stuff y dont know what ur reading about ha

May 6, 2010 at 11:23 am
(7) Matt says:

ok eddison didnt invent the tattoo machine he invented an engraving device (not for human skin) O’reilly modified the ENGRAVING DEVICE and completley changed it into a tattoo machine (ment for human skin) its like once there was an acoustic guitar the dude was famous for inventing it then along came the electric guitar now that dude is famous for that two different inventions that are alike

November 30, 2010 at 12:55 pm
(8) Joey R. says:

wow. i’ve looked everywhere, adn i’ev yet to come across such a heatedly lame disscusion. no, please, continue. just don’t y’know, go get the patent information or anything…

July 27, 2011 at 1:13 am
(9) J. Arvizu says:

Its actually a great discussion.

July 27, 2011 at 10:19 pm
(10) Johnp says:

Edison ripped off Everybody eidson was a great business man but a poor inventor yes he would come up with great ideas but did not know how to make them so he would hire people to make his inventions it’s like me saying I have an idea of a flying car but hiring somebody else to build it who gets the credit for inventing it. It should be 50/50 edison didn’t think that way he took all the credit.read the story on edison and tesla the ac/dc war. Anyway edison did not invent the tattoo machine and yes tattoo machines do look like old door bells thank you and sorry for the long post

September 24, 2011 at 10:22 am
(11) Robert says:

I am the Great Grandson of Son of S.F. O’Reilly. Through out history people have been using and upgrading inventions to make them there own so chill with the hating. ;-0

February 21, 2012 at 5:52 pm
(12) anonymous says:

ummmm…….. i’m just looking for some info for this speech i’m doing in english class, and this doesn’t help me at all! everyone is just saying something different, and none of it makes sense! jeez. =(

April 13, 2012 at 11:39 am
(13) taylor says:

for anyone that’s doing a report and need the information and the comments are not helping than this is what you should say that Edison invented an engraver that was modified by O’Reilly so that it could be used in skin its a simple answer and its correct

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